When spring comes around, it is time to look at the fireplace. Most people will have used the fireplace all winter long, which means soot will have collected along the edges. It is crucial to tidy things up for this part of the house. But do you know how to clean a fireplace?
Don’t ignore the fireplace and assume it will be good to go in the coming winter. It is essential to maintain it, and that is where the right cleaning strategy comes in handy.
What’s Required To Clean A Fireplace?
If you want to clean a fireplace, you will have to be aware of the present ash. It will be behind the glass door, and it will be pretty messy. You have to be prepared to clean it thoroughly.
It is also common for the mess to become a hazard later on. It is due to chimney fires in houses. It would be best if you always kept the fireplace clean for this reason alone. You don’t want creosote to build up inside the chimney as that is when fires can break out. It can cause the fire to spread onto the surrounding bricks and woodwork.
If you regularly burn creosote, this increases the risk of a fire spreading out of the flue. It is damaging, and you have to avoid it at all costs.
Fireplaces can also become a health risk if you are not cleaning them regularly. It is due to the ash spreading inside the house and getting breathed into your lungs. It is an irritant, and it will add up over time if you are not careful.
Tips On Cleaning a Fireplace Thoroughly.
Get Rid of the Ash
The first step is to get rid of the ash in the fireplace. It won’t be easy, but it can be done. You will want to look at the layer of ash near the base of the firebox. It is where the wood rests, but the air has to go underneath for the fireplace to work correctly.
If you have a fireplace turned off during the warmer months, you have to get rid of this ash to keep the house clean. To do this, take a simple shovel and place the ash inside a non-combustible container (i.e. metal trash can). It will help keep the ash in one place and ensure you have a clean fireplace too.
Your fireplace may have an ash dump door. If it does, you should use that dump door. It will simplify the process for you.
It is essential to look at all of your options in this situation. Some homeowners take the time to vacuum the ash out of their fireplace. If you do this, it might not be as straightforward as you think it is. The reason has to do with the vacuum making a mess in the rest of the room. You should only use a specialized ash vacuum if that is the direction you want. There are situations where making a mess is a problem and the potential for a fire breaking out as the vacuum sparks when interacting with the ash.
Clean the Fireplace Soot
Cleaning the fireplace soot is a must, and you need to do it using a chemical solution. The market has quite a few options for you to choose from when it comes to getting rid of soot and creosote. It’s all about taking your time to make sure you do things the right way, and this includes using a mechanical brush. You will want to let the chemicals sit and work away on the deposits.
You will also want to make sure to have a maintenance schedule in place to clean the fireplace. It will include removing the grates and cleaning them with a brush and cloth. Also, it is a must even if you are getting a professional to come in to clean the soot. It is to ensure corrosion does not become a problem. To do this wisely, you will want to use steel wool and vegetable oil. Rub the oil on the grate and then wipe with the steel wool.
When you are doing this, you will want to protect yourself. Soot is dangerous when exposed to excess, so you have to be covered. It includes wearing a face mask during the process. If you are not wearing the necessary equipment, you may be hurt, especially if you inhale the soot.
Clean the Fireplace Glass
The next step is to make sure you focus on the glass door, as that will be a big part of the fireplace. You are going to have to do this constantly with a gas fireplace. The glass gets dirty quickly when it comes to this type of fireplace due to the cloudiness. You can clean the surface using a cloth.
The best approach is to take the glass apart and clean it outside. It will ensure you don’t get the soot all over the room when you take it out.
It would be best not to use a cleaner for this task. Instead, go with a vinegar cleaning solution, as that is how you can get rid of the stains on the fireplace glass quickly.
Don’t Damage the Brick Fireplace
Using ammonia is a bad idea when it comes to brick fireplaces. The bricks don’t respond well to ammonia and start to break down on you. It is why it’s essential to clean them using dishwashing detergent. It is a much more effective solution for bricks and will work like a charm.
You will also want to take the time to prepare a little mixture. This mixture is going to include water and dishwashing detergent. Mix them and then use this formula to wipe away the soot.
Reach Out To A Professional
It is always wise to reach out to a CSIA-certified technician. These professionals are the real deal when it comes to cleaning all types of fireplaces. It ensures you are not taking any risks with the cleaning process and do everything the right way. Also, it keeps the room clean when it is time to work on the fireplace.
Professionals have the right equipment and know what works for all fireplaces. It keeps things simple, whether it is time to clean the chimney or the fireplace glass.
Professionals are also aware of what to look for when it comes to potential damage in the future.
How to Clean a Fireplace – Schedule an Inspection Now!
You can take the time to call in and get a professional to look at your fireplace right away. A CSIA-certified technician will be more than happy to schedule an appointment and come over to take a look at what’s going on with your fireplace.